After the harrowing intensity of confession and penitence in psalm 32 we emerge, in psalm 33, fully forgiven, into the freedom, release and relief of sheer praise. I love the note of rejoicing, and the details about all the instruments in the opening verses of this psalm:
REJOICE in the Lord, O ye righteous: for it becometh well the just to be thankful.
Praise the Lord with harp: sing praises unto him with the lute, and instrument of ten strings.
Sing unto the Lord a new song: sing praises lustily unto him with a good courage.
As I began to write my poem in response to this psalm, I glanced around my room and realised that I had just such instruments as the psalmist mentions all to hand and in sight. From my writing table I could see my harp, my trusty old guitar, and a mandolin I am still learning how to play, so I thought they ought all to find a place in this poem.
The psalmist goes on to praise God not only for his faithfulness to us, but to his whole creation:
By the word of the Lord were the heavens made: and all the hosts of them by the breath of his mouth.
He gathereth the waters of the sea together, as it were upon an heap: and layeth up the deep, as in a treasure-house.
and those verses too found their way into my praise- poem.
As usual you can hear me read the poem by pressing the ‘play’ button if it appears, or else by clicking on the title. For the other poems in my psalm series type the word ‘psalm’ into the search box on the right.
A love that comforts and embraces us
Is the true theme of every song I make
How tenderly he finds, and takes and places us
Deep into Christ himself for his love’s sake.
The strings of all my instruments will stir
My heart to praise. Therefore I take
My harp, my mandolin, my old guitar
And let them sound a new song in his praise
Whose word is true, whose works so full and fair
Are radiant with glory, and whose ways
Are tried and trusted. The whole earth
Is charged and brimming with his goodness. Days
Are ordained to praise him, by his breath
The stars of night are kindled, by his love
He raises and delivers us from death.
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